Donuts of Faith with Virtuous Living and a Coupon

6:46 AM Tiffany Hinton 1 Comments

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Recently I got the pleasure to speak with the sister team behind the brand of Virtuous Living.  

Meet the Sisters:

Nichole M. Thomas
Founder and CEO

Nichole has a vision for her company. For years she and her family suffered from a multitude of health challenges. Hers relating to bearing children and her husband’s, NBA veteran Etan Thomas, from the rigors of being a professional athlete. With her propensity for science and knowledge of anatomy, Nichole quickly learned that food has the ability to heal. For eight years she cultivated the knowledge and techniques required to prepare healthy food in a therapeutic, delicious and creative way. The result is a line of handcrafted spices that brings the gluten-free goodness to meals.
Nichole received her Bachelor’s degree in International Relations and Foreign Affairs from Syracuse University where she played college basketball. She met Etan on her first day at school and 17 years later, they are married with three beautiful children, Malcolm, Imani and Sierra. Coming from a family deeply rooted in faith, Nichole has always been well aware of what it means to have the blessings of God and to be a blessing to others. Today, Nichole combines her family values with her gluten-free lifestyle and invites others to share the benefits of her experiences and education through her company, Virtuous Living™.

Bronique D. Jones

Bronique is a highly regarded professional with significant experience in the implementation of financial best practices, business operations and strategic growth of start-up organizations. In other words, she is a force to be reckoned with in the business world. Armed with a BA in Financial Management from Baruch College, City University of New York and an MS in Business Management from the University of Maryland, University College, Bronique brings impeccable credentials to the Virtuous Living™ brand.
A native New Yorker and mother to a teenage son, Jaryd, Bronique knows the importance of creating a healthy environment for today’s busy families. As a working mom, she also understands their challenges and felt she had to be a part of the solution in some way. Her unrelenting desire to make a difference, not just for her personal life, but for others as well, led to her transition from corporate leader to small-business owner, and she’s not looking back.

The story behind Virtuous Living is one of passion and pursuit which I can relate. The search for answers is one of the foundations behind GF Mom Certified. 

Nichole told Mom Certified that Virtuous Living was born from her being diagnosed celiac 6 years ago while pregnant with her third child.  When she started having contractions at 3 months pregnant and was put on bed rest, she knew something was wrong.  After being mis-diagnosed six times by the medical professionals, she was frustrated and sought out the expertise of a neuropathic doctor and within days was diagnosed with severe gluten allergies.  Once going gluten free she delivered a healthy child at full term.  

In Nichole's own words "It's one thing when we find out something is wrong with us, but when it's our babies watch out now !" After her initial diagnosis of celiac disease, Nichole found out her second child was also celiac.  It angered her to find out there was as much gluten in spices as in a half a loaf of bread plus anti caking agents and preservatives too. Wanting to still deliver food with flavor to her family, Nichole started blending spices and Virtuous Living was born.

The parallels in her story bring both a tear and a familiar smile. Bronquie says "being gluten-ed" is a verb in their family.  I have to admit "gluten-ed" is a verb in our home too.

Starting Virtuous Living was not as easy as Nichole makes it sound today, says Bronique.  The business part came easy for Bronique with a background in marketing.  Although the process and development was not easy.   It took one and half years, time and energy as the sisters put thought into every step from packaging to ingredients.  Today Virtuous Living is a family business from the children helping label containers to the support and prayers from their grandparents.  

Both sisters say they quickly learned that when you fall down to jump back up and get going.  

While there are other gluten free spice brands on the market they are not all certified gluten free, certified organic, non-GMO, kosher, and halal certified.  I was surprised to hear they held 5 certifications and Bronique says this surprises several people.

Virtuous Living has changed their lives not only in health, but in business. Bronique has learned you need to hold a company to high standards.Virtuous Living is dedicated to flavor, convenience, and consistency. When you cook with Virtuous Living spice blends you can expect  them to deliver on their promise of flavor, convenience, and consistency.  Nichole says the product can vary in color because with organic products the produce can vary season to season and Virtuous Living does not use color enhancers in their spices. Virtuous Living standards are so much higher and they do not settle for what the FDA says is safe. Everything about it is the very best it could possible be from the ingredients to the blending process.

The bottle and branding for Virtuous Living itself is a communication in it's self.  The spice names clearly and spiritually tie Faith Hope and Love to the company name of Virtuous Living.  Even without my Christian background, I can see the sisters built their business on faith and passion.  (insert scripture here)

Nichole reminds me of the need to make sure you stay healthy, but your children's' health is of utmost importance.  I can definitely relate as Gluten Free Mom Certified was developed in my own pursuit to provide my daughters with flavorful gluten and dairy free food.

Use Promo Code: GFMOM03070314 20% of product valid through 03/14/14 at www.virtuousliving.com

Donuts with Faith:

  • For the Donuts: 
  • 2 cup gluten free all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla 
  • 2 tsp faith spice
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup almond milk
  • 2 Tbsp butter, melted (coconut oil)

1. In a large mixing bowl, combine all donut ingredients until well blended. Fill a donut pan 1/2-3/4 full with batter. Bake donuts in a 325 degree oven for about 12 minutes. Remove. Cool on wire rack for 5 minutes, remove from pan and cool completely before dredging through cinnamon and sugar.
Use Promo Code: GFMOM03070314 20% of product valid through 03/14/14 

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Lauren said...

Thanks so much for sharing your donut recipe on EpiFamily's Food Allergy Love Fest Link-up! It looks delish and I'm excited to learn more about the virtuous living spices! I hope you'll come back and link-up another yummy, allergy-friendly recipe!